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Herons, Bombers battle to scoreless draw, Ithaca claims league title on PKs

  • / Updated:
  • Kyle Evans 

The nationally-ranked William Smith College soccer team and Ithaca played to a scoreless draw on Cozzens Field in the Liberty League Championship game Sunday afternoon. The Bombers captured the league title and the automatic bid to the NCAA tournament with a 5-3 win in penalty kicks. It ended the Herons’ 14-year reign as conference champions.

William Smith (11-1-6) now awaits its fate as an at-large bid. The 2022 NCAA Women’s Soccer Selection show is scheduled for 2 p.m., tomorrow, November 7.

KEY STATS:

  • William Smith dominated the stat sheet, finishing with a 21-8 advantage in shots. The Herons also had a 9-3 edge in corner kicks.
  • Today’s game was the fourth-straight scoreless draw for the Herons, and it was the sixth straight shutout for the Herons’ defense.
  • Amanda Kesler went the distance in goal for William Smith, making four saves.

MOST OUTSTANDING:

  • Ithaca’s goalie, Claire Reader was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Performer. She made 11 saves during the tournament, including 10 during today’s championship game.

MATCH MOMENTS:

  • Katrine Berg had the first chance of the game for William Smith in the 25th minute, but her shot from just outside the 18-yard box was smothered by Reader.
  • In the 32nd minute, Kaitlyn Weis had a shot turned aside by Kesler.
  • Emma Faso nearly broke the deadlock in the 49th minute, but her shot was punched aside by Reader.
  • At the opposite end of the pitch, Kesler made a diving stop on an attempt from Ally Stanton.
  • In the 72nd minute, Julia Berg had a header attempt stopped by Reader.
  • Ella Reish nearly won the game in the second overtime, but her heel flick was gobbled up by Reader.
  • Ruth Hotaling had perhaps the best chance to win the game in the 103rd minute. She fired a shot from 20-yards out that was ticketed for the bottom right corner of the cage. It was turned aside by a diving Reader.

THE SHOOTOUT:

  • The Bombers switched goalies in the shootout, inserting Grace Hickey between the pipes.
  • Ithaca chose to shoot first and converted on all five of their attempts.
  • William Smith converted on their first attempt, but Hickey dove to her left to make the save on the second attempt.